But go and learn what that means, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.
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Theophylact of Ochrid
He says, "I have not come now as judge but as physician, and for this reason I endure stench and filth." He also rebukes them for being ignorant when He says, "Go ye and learn." This means, "Since up to the present time you have not managed to learn, so at least from this time on go and learn that God prefers mercy towards sinners above any sacrifice" (Hosea 6:7). The words "I am not come to call the righteous" He spoke ironically. That is, "I have not come to call you who consider yourselves to be righteous, but I have come to call sinners. I do this, not so that they remain sinners, but in order for them to repent."